Wheel of Misfortune


Each performance took a tiny strip off of your credibility. It happened so slowly, you didn’t really notice straight away. The money was good and middle class, middle aged soccer moms the world over have chosen you to provide their dinner party ambiance instead of Michael Bolton or that pesky Josh Groban. So what if the talent you once had has now been irrevocably compromised by the string of non-threatening tracks you sold your soul to record. Brenda and her girlfriends from Weight Watchers love you. So does Marjorie and all the ladies from First Baptist Church on Main Street. After all you looked so handsome earnestly over-emoting in your Armani suit and what woman wouldn’t swoon at the sound of a mysterious Latin accent?

After the microphone makes an appearance, it’s game over. You will be sucked into a vortex from which no one has escaped unscathed. Microphones are the Pandora’s box of the operatic world. Why not, you innocently reasoned? I’ll just try it once. The mic will connect me to my public; make the art seem more accessible. How else am I going to project in Madison Square Garden? It all seemed so reasonable at the time. The sweetest apple is the one that is already rotting.


Miss Mussel Presents: How To Euthanise Your Career in 3 Easy Steps.

Step One: Shameless self-promotion on a long-running game show watched by millions of Brendas and Marjories. The performance is cringeworthy even by your own elastic standards but since your credibility is now hanging by a thread, it doesn’t much matter.


Step Two: Being hawked by Guy Smiley and his assistant on the Home Shopping Network. The needle is being readied.

Step Three: A contract with TimeLife Music…the barbituates slowly circulate through your veins and you go out, not with at bang but with whimper.


  1. Miss Mussel

    Well-spotted, Lane. Things are still getting underway here at OM headquarters. As usual, all the important things like an editor and my supply of Marks & Spencer Percy the Pig sweets are still packed away in the boxes Miss Mussel neglected to carefully label when packing. Writing without Percy is like riding a unicycle down Mount Snowdon….possible but not advisable.

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  3. Sean

    How can you have no respect for these guys? They all came from relatively no where to take the world by storm with their amazing voices. I don’t know why people are saying your writing is good when you don’t have much of an idea what you are talking about. They were on tour from July 2006 until July 2007 without more than a five day break from traveling, recording, and performing. They have put out three CDs since their debut, gone on tour with Barbara Streisand (one of the greatest entertainers of all time) and been at the top of the charts in thirteen countries around the world. What do you really know about Il Divo?

  4. Miss Mussel

    Popularity does not always equal critical success. Singing with other pop stars does not always equal artistic achievement.

    Pavarotti is the perfect example of this. He was a well respected opera singer in the 60s and 70s and then achieved global popularity as part of the Three Tenors in the early 1990s. He sang with loads of pop stars and sold millions of discs even though his voice was well past its prime.

    Being on tour/recording/performing is not much an indicator of success. Most musicians do that regardless of their relative “goodness.”

    As far as charts go, Miss Mussel is not really interested. Most of the music she listens to does not qualify for rating on the charts. This doesn’t make her better than others, it’s just the way it is. In lieu of an arbitrary list to tell her what to like, Miss Mussel prefers to evaluate each piece on its own artistic merits and decide from there.

    What does Miss Mussel know about Il Divo? She knows that the members were handpicked by Simon Cowell because they check all the marketing boxes. In situations like this, the singing is really secondary to the image. Think, NKOTB, Backstreet Boys, Spice Girls etc. Il Divo’s voices don’t command respect but Mr Cowell certainly does. He saw a hole in the market and filled it, expertly.

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